The family of Dian Astrid O'Neal (Chevalier) is sad to announce her passing on January 31, 2021 at her home in Oakmont Village, Santa Rosa. She died of heart failure at age 79.
Born on January 23, 1942 in Bronxville New York, Dian spent the majority of her life in Connecticut, before moving to Sonoma in 2008. She leaves behind her husband, Bill O’Neal, her three sons, Dwayne, Sean and Bret O’Neal, her niece, Doreen Fender and her three grandchildren, Ella, Logan and Ethan O’Neal.
Besides being a great wife and mother, Dian had a remarkable professional career, starting at the University of Miami where she first displayed her flair for writing. She leveraged that talent into an early career in advertising, first in Miami and then in Connecticut.
Her love of horses then took over. An avid equestrian since childhood, she turned that passion into a full-time business, importing horses from Europe, training them in classical dressage at her barn The Ridge , in Durham, CT, then selling them to eager American riders. All the while she continued to ride and train her own horses.
Her interest in naturopathic medicine prompted her to go back to school, this time to the University of Bridgeport’s College of Naturopathic Medicine and summer programs at Ohio State and University of Nebraska. In 1995, a newly-minted Dr. Dian O’Neal opened her office, Natural Healthcare, in Durham, CT.
Dian closed her Natural Healthcare practice in 2008 to move to Sonoma, where she could ride year-round without shoveling snow. It was in Sonoma that she acquired her pride and joy, her magnificent Lipizzaner Siglavy.
“Dian was the most amazing person I’ve ever known,” says her husband. “She could walk through walls. There was nothing she couldn’t do if she set her sights on it.”
A virtual memorial for Dian will be held on Saturday, February 13, 2021. Memorial contributions can be made in Dian’s name to Sonoma Equine Rescue, Rehab & Adoption, 1971 Crane Canyon Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95404
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Dian O'Neal, please visit our floral store.
Sonoma Equine Rescue, Rehab & Adoption
1971 Crane Canyon Rd, Santa Rosa CA 95404